Organizational purpose and meaningful work
: the role of work centrality and purpose statements

  • Lenja Eleanor Offinger (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis

Abstract

This study explores the relationships between organizational purpose, work centrality, purpose statement content, and work meaningfulness. The study uses a mixed-methods approach that includes primary data in the form of eight interviews and surveys as well as related theories as secondary data included in the literature review. Quantitative results reveal a partial mediation effect of work centrality and a positive relationship between perceived organizational purpose and meaningful work. Furthermore, meaningful work is directly influenced by organizational purpose, whereas work meaningfulness has a weak indirect effect, suggesting that other influential factors are involved. Qualitative insights offer diverse employee viewpoints regarding the purpose of the organization. The impact of purpose on job satisfaction and the importance of sustainability was acknowledged by the interviewees, however, concerns arose regarding operational alignment with the purpose statement. The purpose statement was perceived as directing daily activities; however, it did not always impact day-to-day operations. The study also investigates whether the relationship between meaningful work and perceived purpose is mediated by the purpose statement’s content. The results point to a possible role for content even though it has no significant effect on the relationship between meaningful work and perceived purpose, suggesting the existence of unmeasured variables. Overall, this study adds to the understanding of the ways in which work centrality, organizational purpose, and purpose statement content interact to create meaningful work experiences. These complex results help clarify the intricate dynamics of organizational purpose in creating meaningful work.
Date of Award30 Jan 2024
Original languageEnglish
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorAndrea Cavicchini (Supervisor)

Keywords

  • Organizational purpose
  • Work meaningfulness
  • Employee perception
  • Purpose statement content
  • Organizational strategy

Designation

  • Mestrado em Gestão e Administração de Empresas

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